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December to Remember is turning out to be a welcomed addition in the City of Freeport, with organizers already witnessing success thus far.  The Grand Bahama Port Authority's Invest Grand Bahama Small Business Bureau (IGBSBB) is the primary sponsor of three events geared at getting residents in the mood for the holidays.  In collaboration with the Downtown Freeport Business Association (DFBA), IGBSBB held the third Movie Night on Friday, December 9th, representing the first in a series of three events to be held during the month of December. The vintage drive in movie affair attracted scores of movie goers to the centre of the Downtown area, who began arriving almost two hours to showtime, underscoring the level of enthusiasm for the complimentary undertaking. 

The night was perfect for the viewing of the movie, Miracle From Heaven, as cars parked with families and couples all spending quality time took advantage of the cold weather and crisp breeze to get comfortable for a movie, which highlights God's love and miraculous healing of a little girl.  Seating was also made available for residents who wished to view the movie from the big screen placed directly in front of Park -n-Shop for all to see.

The Northern Bahamas Council for the Disabled recently benefitted from the Grand Bahama Port Authority’s community outreach.  Just recently, council members visited the headquarters of the GBPA to accept a donation cheque.  The donation was timely as residents of all walks of life continue to rebuild their lives, following the devastating impact of Hurricane Matthew.  Accepting on behalf of the organization was its president, Frederick Poitier, accompanied by council treasurer, Monica Williams and secretary, Sharon McGregor.

According to Poitier, the donation made by officials of the GBPA was a “Ray of Sunshine.”  Poitier, who took on the position of president of the council less than a week before the hurricane hit, stated that council members were in need of assistance and it came at the right time.  “Following the hurricane, we were concerned that our members were being left behind.  We were on empty food wise and at the council, the cupboards were bare.”

Good morning and welcome everyone!  It’s day 41 of Hurricane Matthew restoration and so, like the Bible, after 40 days and 40 nights we come to our Fifth and Final Hurricane briefing (not that we’re going to stop working!). As we approach the close of this stormy restoration chapter, we begin a new one of reconstitution - a return to a sense of normalcy.

What lessons have we learned?

For many households throughout the Grand Bahama Community, the need to utilize propane tanks and butane canisters increased in the wake of Hurricane Matthew.  The disruption in electricity meant having to prepare hot meals beyond the familiar electric stove for many families. With this change, also came an inundation of such containers discarded at various dumpsters in both the city and outlying areas. As the crews of Sanitation Services continue with their cleanup efforts, Lou Carroll, General Manager addressed the proper disposal of the canisters and propane tanks.

Carroll noted, “There is a specific procedure related to any pressure vessel, not just propane. The valve on it must be disconnected and the tank has to be flushed. We do not take pressure vessels with residual material in it.”  According to Carroll, pickups of larger propane tanks in particular, are not in the purview of Sanitation Services. He stated that such tanks are dealt with by specialized entities such as FOCOL on the island.

The Grand Bahama Port Authority announces that it is adding to its program of care packages, water, and ice distribution and has organized a series of seminars to assist both business owners and families dealing with the post-crisis impact of Hurricane Matthew.

GBPA’s Vice President – Henry St. George states: “alongside our relief program we are commencing the rebuilding phase, The GBPA has organized two days of post crisis management seminars – one day focusing on families and one day for business owners. The seminars will provide critical information and guidance and help attendees navigate the after effects of Hurricane Matthew. These seminars will be FREE of charge and will occur on different days to allow attendees the opportunity to participate in both. GBPA has arranged for internationally renowned post crisis specialist Grace Plank to come to Grand Bahama and share her knowledge to assist families and business owners as they go through a period of rebuilding.”

ABOUT GBPA


The Hawksbill Creek Agreement (HCA) gave GBPA responsibility for the development, administration and management, and provision of services within an area called the 'Port Area' (230 sq. miles). GBPA was mandated by this Agreement to build a deep water harbour, an industrial community and required infrastructure for the City.

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PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE


GBPA has achieved an astonishing amount since its inception in 1955.  When first created it was a Grand Bahamian business conglomerate charged not only with land and commercial development but also with all the regulatory and administrative functions of the Freeport/Lucaya.

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THE WAY FORWARD


Firstly, I wish to thank Joan Albury and the Counsellors for this platform enabling us to share with the Grand Bahama community, the outlook for our island! 2015 marks the 60th year of the birth of Freeport and the Hawksbill Creek Agreement; 60 years of a partnership between The Government of The Bahamas and The Grand Bahama Port Authority. I'm here to raise hopes for 2015 and to lay a few popular myths to rest - For those who don't know me, I am Sarah St George.

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